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Annu Rev Immunol. 2012;30:531-64. doi: 10.1146/annurev.immunol.25.022106.141623. Epub 2012 Jan 6.

Regulatory T cells: mechanisms of differentiation and function.

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1
Howard Hughes Medical Institute and Immunology Program, Sloan Kettering Institute, New York, NY 10021, USA.

Abstract

The immune system has evolved to mount an effective defense against pathogens and to minimize deleterious immune-mediated inflammation caused by commensal microorganisms, immune responses against self and environmental antigens, and metabolic inflammatory disorders. Regulatory T (Treg) cell-mediated suppression serves as a vital mechanism of negative regulation of immune-mediated inflammation and features prominently in autoimmune and autoinflammatory disorders, allergy, acute and chronic infections, cancer, and metabolic inflammation. The discovery that Foxp3 is the transcription factor that specifies the Treg cell lineage facilitated recent progress in understanding the biology of regulatory T cells. In this review, we discuss cellular and molecular mechanisms in the differentiation and function of these cells.

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